Explore a Career in Business Analysis (LinkedIn Learning)




What Is Business Analysis?


Provide a bridge between technical and business viewpoints

As a

  • Professional: Certification (IIBA, BCS, …)
  • Competencies: e.g. facilitation, problem-solving, negotiation, industry/organisational knowledge
  • Research
  1. Internally, from a commercial (marketing, sales, finance) role
  2. Internally, from an IT role (e.g. product support)
  3. As a graduate who enjoys problem solving, research, analysis

Business Analysis Foundations


“The practise of enabling change in the context of an enterprise by defining the needs and recommending solutions that deliver value to stakeholders” - IIBA

“The process by which we identify business needs, recommend relevant solutions, and understand requirements.“xxxxxxx

Activities: understand current needs; focus on strategic objectives; help achieve goals

Can act at a business or project level

Skills: business acumen, analytical, communication

  1. Problems or possible improvements
  2. Opportunities or new endeavours
  3. Compliance requirements
  1. Identify the problem
  2. Assess the current state
  3. Discern the future state
  4. Determine the gaps
  1. The problem or opportunity
  2. has the effect of X
  3. with the resulting impact of Y.
  • Ishikawa diagram
  • Five Whys

Sentence recommending the most viable option to meet the needs while also defining initial scope and steps.

But always provide multiple options.

“An individual, group, or organisation that may affect, be affected by, or perceive itself to be affected by a decision, activity, or outcome of a project.” - PMBOK

Classifying: Power vs Interest matrix

Stakeholder engagement: format, content, timing

Documents benefits and justifies costs

Components: Situation statement, stakeholders, scope, relationship with organisational strategies, (root cause) analysis, success factors, potential gaps, risk assessment, assumptions, milestones, roles and responsibilities, financials (payback period, NPV, IRR, ROI, …), alternatives, …

Vision (short, precise, aligned across teams → an elevator pitch): Why, what, who, when, where, how

Involves: Sponsor, PM, BA, stakeholders

Roadmap with milestones

BA gives PM: activities needed to elicit, analyse, and evaluate requirements, and activities tracing, veriyfing, and validating requirements

Sometimes BA and PM roles are combined

  • Business: high level needs of the organisation
  • Stakeholder: internal or external
  • Solution: features, functions, characteristics
    • Functional: e.g. webstore
    • Non-functional: e.g. security
  • Transition: activities to move from current to future state e.g. training
  • Project: PM responsibility
  • Quality: QA responsibility

Facilitated sessions, interviews (structured, semi, unstructured), …

  • Process modelling: verbs → determine the process
  • Data modelling: nouns → determine the product/customer

Traceability approach (how requirements are related) and traceability matrix (tool for tracking e.g. Kanban board)

Change control and configuration control (using version control)

Verification (conforms with specification) + validation (confirm results meets acceptance criteria and stakeholder needs)

Use RACI to ensure everyone is communicated with correctly

Release plan: Who is it being released to? Can it (or must it) be deployed in (prioritised) stages?

Transition plan: Pilots, old and new simultaneous and phase out, or Big Bang. Is training needed?

Monitor implementation to ensure requirements were met and see future potential improvements

Strategic Business Analysis Essentials


  • Map out the roadmap from current to future state
  • Consider ways to minimise business risk
  • Anticipate how to increase adoption while achieving the desired outcome

Define the aim. Is it a problem or an opportunity?

  1. Be a listener
  2. Be a simplifier
  3. Be transparent

Why it needs to change and what will be affected (directly or indirectly)

Need to understand:

  • Organisational needs
  • Organisational structure and cultures
  • Capabilities and processes
  • Technology and infrastructure
  • Policies
  • Business architecture
  • Internal assets
  • External influencers

Can be done in parallel with analysing current state

Determine the set of necessary conditions to meet the business need

Identify, timing, circumstances, solutions, recommendation, etc

Severity vs Likelihood matrix

Check for unknowns, constraints/assumptions/dependences, negative impacts to value, risk tolerance

  1. Solution scope
  2. Gap analysis
  3. Enterprise readiness assessment
  4. Change strategy recommendation
  • Organisational ability to absorb change
  • Change heat map
  • Timing for change
  • Timeline to deliver benefits
  • Alignment of change

Political Economical Social Technological Legal Environmental

Competition in the industry; potential of new entrants into the industry; Power of suppliers; power of customers; threat of substitute products

Mission Objectives Strategy Tactics

Current tangible and intangible resources

Growth-Share: Cash cow, star, question mark, dog

Markets vs Products/Services

Existing vs New

Market Penetration, Market Development, Diversification, Product Development

Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats

Business Analysis Foundations: Business Process Modelling



  1. Capture processes
  2. Provide visual representation
  3. Identify what’s needed

In modelling, stakeholders = actors (person, system, or functional area)

Modelling languages: UML and BPMN

Tool: Visio

Circle is what you have control over (i.e. organisation), box represents what you have influence over

Don’t get too complex e.g. group different suppliers into single supplier entity if the same processes/relationships


Start with external entity e.g. customer

Focus on a single interaction

Focus on the what is transacted not how


Circle = start/stop (terminator), rectangle = process, parallel lines = sub-process, plus symbol = expansion, diamond = decision, arrows

Verb-noun combination

Rule of thumb: no more than 16 boxes


aka Process Maps

KRAC: Keep Remove Add Change

Enables impact assessments

Focus on a single functional area


Business Analysis Foundations: Competencies


Co-creating: shared understanding of big picture and requirements details

Rapport and empathy: “what does success look like?” “so what I’m hearing is…”

Conflict management: separate people from the problem; focus on the desired outcome and organisational goals

Influence without authority: understand their resistances and receptiveness, align to their motivations

Decision-making: know who the decision-makers are, what the decisions are, and what data is needed to make the decisions

Change management: identifying impact groups and how to support them

Meetings: agendas with purpose, objective, topcs (from their perspective); make sure everyone is heard

Conversations: open, thought-provoking questions; break into pairs/small groups then collate

Requirements processes: requirements evolve and emerge over time

Verbal: phrasing and tone of questions, summarisations, general information

Listening: hearing for intent not only the words; for logic and biases

Visual: tables, matrices, diagrams, models

Written: story from the user’s point of view; clear asks/next steps

Business: how the product/project strategically aligns to the organisation and which teams it affects; what the KPIs are; who the organisation’s customers are

Innovation: discover → develop → deliver

Architecture and processes: enables seeing existing links/systems across/in the organisation and relating to the product/project

Systems thinking: break down big concepts to smaller pieces, how one thing impacts another

Creativity: also fostering creativity in others

Visual modelling and diagrams: for communication, analysis, catch unstated requirements

Data analysis: understand, identify, find meaning, flows, relationships, connections, gain insights

Curiosity: ask questions (with the right tone), challenge assumptions

Productivity tools

Technology landscape: future trends e.g. AI

Data, process, and rules: e.g. shipping address, web form, data format validation